The biometric data system developed in Turkey becomes operational

The centralized national biometric data management system has been put into operation at local and national levels, Turkey’s Interior Minister announced. It will replace all systems developed by foreign companies.

Minister Süleyman Soylu took to Twitter to say that the biometric system had reached the implementation stage, with more than 45,000 sets of fingerprints captured so far, according to a Google translation.

Local Turkish-language media coverage, such as Defense Turk, reports that Turkey is the seventh country in the world to develop and release its own biometric data system.

The big plan is to collect all of Turkey’s biometric data through the National Biometric Data System and the National Biometric Data Center under the auspices of the Interior Ministry, Defense Turk says.

From fingerprint scanning, other biometric data will be added such as palm prints, facial recognition, voice and iris recognition. The system is being developed by local company Biyoteksan, with technical support from Havelsan, and includes algorithms for biometric authentication and identification.

The first users of the centralized and digitized biometric system are linked to the Ministry of Interior, the General Directorate of Migration Management, the General Directorate of Population and Citizenship Affairs, the General Directorate of Security, Gendarmerie General Command and Coast Guard Command, according to the report.

Fingerprint scanning and locally developed databases have been available to the Directorate General of Migration Management for some time and have been used to collect millions of fingerprints from Syrian refugees and verify the fingerprints of persons intercepted in border areas.

Biometrics is also required for Turkish visa applications.

However, a law firm wrote as the timeline turned towards 2022 that the Turkish Data Protection Board pointed out that “even though biometric data is regulated as one of the special categories of data by Article 6 of Law No. 6698 on Personal Data Protection, the concept has not yet been defined by national regulations,” in an article available on Mondaq.

EU funding for Turkey is also on hold, partly due to personal data protection.

Article topics

authentication | biometric data | biometric identification | biometrics | data collection | data protection | identity management | multimodal | Turkey

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